William J. Richardson

in Heidegger

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print January 1993 | ISBN: 9780823222551
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235247 | DOI:

Series: Perspectives in Continental Philosophy


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The word “humanism” is a specifically Roman phenomenon, since the word humanus was used to distinguish the homo romanus from the homo barbarus by reason of the Romans' cultural superiority. This was based upon the appropriation of the Greek παιδεί. The essence of the παιδεί is to render man free and steadfast for the intuition of essence. If humanism is taken out of purely historical context, it may be described as the liberating of man unto the dignity that is proper to his nature. This gives it a broader meaning that can apply to any type of philosophical anthropology. Meanwhile, Heidegger interprets man purely out of his relationship with Being—as transcendence.

Keywords: humanism; Plato; humanus; philosophical anthropology; man

Chapter.  1588 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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